This 2017 $20 fine silver coin with antique finish features a depiction of the fossilized remains of an Ogygopsis, a trilobite that thrived in the ancient seas that covered our planet during the Cambrian Period roughly 500 million years ago. Today, their remains are the object of study and fascination. To add to the realistic appearance of this coin, the Royal Canadian Mint has employed a “splash struck” technique, giving each coin a unique shape much like a true fossil.
The coin weighs one ounce of pure silver, and has a limited mintage of just 5,500 coins. As a pure silver coin struck by the Royal Canadian Mint, this item is HST/GST exempt.
The reverse design is based on fossils curated at the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Palaeontology in Drumheller, Alberta, and has been reviewed for scientific accuracy by palaeontologists at the Museum. The rimless coin’s unusual contour is the result of an old coin-minting technique that allows the fine silver to “spill” out and form an irregular shape, much like an ancient Roman coin. Further bridging the past with the present, a combination of cutting-edge technology and finishing techniques re-create the articulated dorsal exoskeleton of a young Ogygopsis klotzi—specifically, that of a presumed moult. The precision-engraved depiction of these fossils has added shine next to the textured appearance of its “rock” encasement. A patina finish gives the entire design an ancient look and feel, which is enhanced by the use of a prehistoric-looking font on both the reverse and obverse.
The coin comes ready-to-display in a floating frame. Measuring 80 mm x 80 mm x 34 mm, this framed presentation makes for one-of-a-kind display art and collectible at the same time. The coin’s antique finish is sealed in lacquer and has the benefit of minimizing the appearance of fingerprints, should the coin be removed from its frame.